Welcome to this week's roundtable, where our fearless panel of fantasy pundits discuss Week 16 Super Subs, play a game of genius or insanity with championship start/sit scenarios, weigh-in on the career of Jameis Winston, and tell us who not to write-off so quickly in dynasty formats.
With this in mind, let's examine what we think about these topics as we head into Week 16:
Week 16 Super Subs
Matt Waldman: If desperate for a starter at one of the positions below in Week 16, give us your best argument in favor of two of the players below...
- RB Boston Scott
- RB Mike Boone
- RB DeAndre Washington
- WR Breshad Perriman
- QB Dwayne Haskins
- QB Gardner Minshew
- WR Steven Sims
- WR Greg Ward
- WR Chris Conley
- WR Keelan Cole
- TE Cameron Brate
- TE Ricky Seals-Jones
Dan Hindery: DeAndre Washington is a great play if Josh Jacobs is out, which seems probable. When Jacobs missed Week 14, Washington fully took over his role in the offense. In fact, Washington played 63 percent of the snaps that week, which was more than Jacobs played in all but three games.
In addition to seeing 14 carries and goal-line work, Washington was also targeted 7 times in the passing game. The Raiders are beat up at wide receiver and tight end, which should solidify Washington’s target share if he is in a starting role.
In addition to strong projected usage, the matchup is also favorable. According to Austin Lee’s normalized strength of schedule, the Chargers defense has been one of the 10 most friendly to opposing backs over the past five weeks, giving up 16 percent more fantasy points than average.
Drew Davenport: There are quite a few names I like on this list, but the ones I'm pointing to are Mike Boone and Breshad Perriman.
Boone's chances of producing are obviously tied to the availability of the two guys ahead of him on the depth chart. But assuming those two can't go, Boone is a plug and play RB2 this week in 12 team leagues.
If you have two good running backs to put in your lineup that's even better because then Boone makes a fantastic flex option if his only competition is Ameer Abdullah. The Vikings also happened to draw the Green Bay Packers this week who bring a defense that is 8th worst in PPR points given up to running backs this year. They've also surrendered 7 touchdowns the last 7 weeks to the position.
Boone managed two scores in Week 15 and clearly played ahead of Abdullah in goal-to-go situations. It does look like it's possible he'll cede some passing down work but either way, Boone is a solid RB2 or great flex play this week.
Perriman is another waiver wire gem that I think has a good chance to produce this week. His Week 15 matchup with the Lions was super soft, but his Week 16 opponent, Houston, is not exactly stout. They were torched last week by AJ Brown to the tune of 8 receptions, 114 yards, and a touchdown.
They've surrendered more than 15 PPR points to wide receivers 13 times already this year, including a couple of games with multiple receivers breaking that barrier. There is no reason to believe that Chris Godwin is going to play this week, and even if the miraculous happens Perriman is still a good start.
The one concern with him is that he does have bust potential due to his low target share. This could easily be a non-issue come Sunday with Godwin and Mike Evans sidelined, but Perriman did see just a 14 percent target share last week on 42 attempts for the Buccaneers.
Nevertheless, the Texans defense is a neutral or even plus matchup and Perriman is going to get the chance to play the lead role this week. I'm starting him with confidence as a WR2, or even better, in the flex spot in a 12 team league.
Mark Schofield: Perriman is a solid answer here, and this is a situation that I will be living myself in two of my leagues this week. With Godwin down for at least week, (and Mike Evans out for the season) Perriman steps into the Tampa Bay lineup and immediately becomes their go-to wide receiver. This played out last week against the Detroit Lions, as Perriman turned in his best performance of the season with over 100 yards receiving and three touchdowns.
He might not duplicate that output, as the Lions' defense is a much more porous unit than what he will face from the Houston Texans this week, but for those desperate at the WR spot, you could do a lot worse.
Washington is obviously a solid choice, with the news that Jon Gruden is shutting Josh Jacobs down for Week 16, but allow me to make a case for Washington WR Steven Sims. First off, Washington faces the New York Giants this week, a defense that is giving up 26.8 points per game to wide receivers this year in fantasy, fourth-most in the league.
But two things work in Sims' favor. First off is the improved play from rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The Ohio State product turned in his best game of the year last week, and on film is improving from processing speed and decision-making standpoint.
Additionally, Sims was impressive last week against the Eagles. He had a nice reception early in the game along the sideline on a wheel route where he displayed great body control and awareness. He capped off that drive with a touchdown—his first receiving TD in the NFL—that also showed great body control and the ability to win at the catch point. HIs 11 targets last week show increased usage in the passing game, so I think he could produce solid numbers for those looking for a sub.
Maurile Tremblay: Breshad Perriman and Greg Ward are my choices.
You don't have to be desperate to start Breshad Perriman. He's a fantasy WR1 this week in my view. The Buccaneers-Texans game is expected to be a shootout (the over/under is 53 points, with Tampa Bay favored by a point), and the Buccaneers have been putting up some huge passing numbers recently. Tampa Bay's aerial attack has focused on the wide receivers all season, with relatively few targets going to their running backs and tight ends.
And it seems that Perriman will be the top WR in Week 16. Mike Evans was placed on IR, and Chris Godwin is likely out as well. When Perriman was featured in Week 15, he was the league's top fantasy WR. I wouldn't count on three touchdowns again, but there is no realistic way to do projections without allocating significant targets to Perriman and with them significant fantasy production in the expected shootout.
Similar to Perriman, Greg Ward unexpectedly finds himself suddenly atop his team's depth chart at wide receiver. Alshon Jeffery is on IR, and Nelson Agholor appears unlikely to suit up this week. Greg Ward has been more effective than rookie J.J. Arcega-Whiteside.
The Eagles do use their tight ends and running backs as passing targets much more than the Buccaneers do, and their game against the Cowboys is not expected to be quite the high-scoring affair as the Bucs' game is (the Cowboys-Eagles game has an over-under of 47.5 points). But with Greg Ward, as apparently the clear number one wide receiver on the Eagles, he's a passable fantasy WR2 and a solid fantasy WR3 this week.
Jeff Pasquino: I'm a bit late to the table this week, but I think many of my fellow staffers picked out the names I would take at the top of the list—Washington and Perriman, for many of the obvious reasons of both likely to start and being in great matchups and situations to put up strong fantasy numbers. I still have concerns about Perriman's hands, as his drop issues were the top reason that he is no longer a Baltimore Raven.
Even this season his catch rate is below 50 percent, which could be cause for concern. Last week he found the end zone three times on just five catches and six targets, and I expect the targets to increase enough to compensate for even a 50 percent catch rate this week.
As for a few other names, Ward and Boston Scott look good from a volume perspective, as the Eagles are running out of wide receivers and running backs as well—but the Dallas defense is no pushover, so production may not be there for Scott and Ward may only have WR3/flex value at best. Lastly, banking on Boone for Minnesota is a big gamble, as Dalvin Cook could go in a big game against Green Bay, and with that game being on Monday Night Football, lineup swap options are going to be limited.
Chad Parsons: Perriman and Ward get my votes for lineup viability in Week 16. Both have solid floor and ceiling combinations on the strength of the quarterback and sheer opportunity as the 'last man standing' on their wide receiver depth charts. Perriman is a top-18 level option with Ward more in the WR3/4 conversation.